Djibouti became a country in 1977, made from the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas. It experienced a civil war during the 1990s which ended in 2001. The country has close ties to France (due to favor by the present leadership), as well as to the U.S. In all of Sub-Saharan Africa, Djibouti hosts the only U.S. military base. It is slightly smaller than Massachusetts, with a total area of 23,200 sq km. Natural resources include potential geothermal power, gold, clay, granite, limestone, marble, salt, diatomite, gypsum, pumice, and petroleum. The country experiences earthquakes and droughts; the occasional cyclonic disturbances from the Indian Ocean also bring heavy rains and flash floods. Arabic and French are its official languages, and the ethnic groups of the country are Somali (60%), Afar (35%), and 5% of the population is some other ethnicity, where “other” includes French, Arab, Ethiopian, and Italian. The country is mostly Muslim (95%) with a small population of Christians (6%). The capital of Djibouti is Djibouti.

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